An independent panel of judges made up of members from the academic and business community selected the winners. “The winners of the Better Business Bureaus Torch Award competition are remarkable for the extraordinary energy, imagination and talent they devote to exceeding the expectations of their customers, employees, suppliers, stakeholders and surrounding communities. They are great examples of businesses that are successful and well run, in today’s competitive marketplace,” said Gary Grubbs, Chair of Better Business Bureau Board of Directors and Advertising/Marketing Manager for Lawrence Hall in Abilene. "All of our honorees have set a wonderful example for businesses of all sizes to follow, and we applaud their contributions for advancing trust in our community.” The BBB Torch Award winners meet the standards for a positive business model: serve your customers, employees, investors, suppliers, communities and even your competitors with high standards of integrity, and you will prosper over the long run.
“It’s great to honor all these companies ,” said Grubbs. “They are examples of excellence and demonstrate the qualities people admire in our free enterprise marketplace.”
Accepting the Torch Award on behalf of the winning companies were: Wes and Clara Ratliff, owner Automated Copy Systems and Kimberly Knight, Chief Financial Officer of Tige Boats. Other companies nominated for the award included: Creative Graphic Solutions, Gary’s Automotive, and Odds and Ends Handyman Service.
About the Award: The Torch Award for Marketplace Trust is a way to honor outstanding companies that go above and beyond the normal in ethical conduct toward their customers, suppliers, employees, and the communities they serve. The Award spotlights companies that build trust in the marketplace by their behavior in the day to day running of their business. Nominations are solicited from customers, employees and vendors of local for profit businesses. The companies are then asked to compete for the torch award. The businesses are judged on the following criteria: Management Practices, Customer/Vendor/Supplier and or shareholder relations, Marketing/Advertising and Sales Practices, and their Reputation within their industry and the Community.
The Award is being presented in partnership with our three Universities. Abilene Christian University, Hardin-Simmons University and McMurry University are co-sponsors of the Torch Award. Each campus will host the award ceremonies every third year. This year McMurry University is hosting the award. “It’s a wonderful way of involving our students with outstanding local businesses who have demonstrated excellence in their ethical conduct,” said Steve Abel, President of the Better Business Bureau. “We are proud to be in partnership with our three Universities in searching out and recognizing outstanding businesses in our marketplace.”
Automated Copy Systems
2611 Post Oak
Family owned Automated Copy Systems is celebrating their 35th Anniversary. Owners Wes and Clara Ratliff attitude is “Positively Outrageous Service”, in fact is so much a part of their business it’s on the sign out front of their building, so employees and customers alike know what to expect from this business machines company.
Over the years the company has grown into a service area radius of 100 miles and 17 employees with an average tenure of 12 years with the company. Christian values and high moral character Mr. & Mrs. Ratliff exhibit influences the leadership and management decisions on their day to day operations.
One of Automated Copy Systems suppliers had this to say, “The employees I work with at Automated Copy Systems – whether service, sales or management, all present themselves in a professional and ethical manner. They represent Automated Copy Systems and Canon in a very positive way. I’ve met many of your longstanding customers and your company’s reputation for exceptional service has been impressive.”
1801 Highway 36
Tige’ Boats was born in California in 1991 and soon relocated to Abilene in 1994. Founder and CEO Charlie Pigeon wanted to create a high performance boat that put the customer experience first. The Tige’ Boats Creed does just that: “We believe our first responsibility is to the retail customer, without whom our business would not exist. Our second responsibility is to all those who work for us. Our third responsibility is to the world in which we live. Our fourth and last responsibility is to our stockholders.”
The company’s reputation is built upon the principles of lawful and ethical conduct. Employees are required to comply with all applicable laws, regulations, and policies, as well as the highest standards of conduct and personal integrity. Employees in all areas and levels are responsible for understanding and complying with the company’s Statement of Ethics.
Here is what one customer said about their experience, “I want to thank the owners and all the people at Tige’ for taking pride in what they do to build and service a quality boat. This is my 5th inboard, but our first Tige’. So far this boat has exceeded my expectations in every way”.